Kyle has been serving his mission for...

Kyle has been serving his mission for...

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Sydney Week 13

First off, I'll post some pictures from the past weeks and paste my comments to President Howes:

Hello! I hope your day is going well for you. It is so crazy to think that tomorrow will mark 3 months that I've been here in Sydney! The most life changing and best 3 months of my life have passed me by in almost an instant. I am so grateful to be serving here as a missionary. I still remember well the feeling when I read that I had been called and found worthy to represent my Savior as a missionary to preach His gospel. I was just reflecting the other day at how I have looked forward to serving a mission for many years, and now that I am here, it almost seems too real to be true. The miracles I witness, the amount of times I am able to feel of the spirit, and the changes I have seen in myself have been remarkable. I need to constantly be more grateful for the wonderful blessings that I have here, and to make sure I don't take them for granted.
In response to the questions for this week. My core experience with God this week was with our finding new investigators. We have been striving to maximize the amount of time we are able to go and find, and we are seeing the blessings! I truly believe that we will accomplish our zone goal this month of 100 new investigators, and that makes me very excited! Elder Wan and I continue to see many small miracles each day, but through time, these small miracles turn into great works. 
The thing that will be most difficult for me to become a 10 is always being aware and conscious that my companion and I are both being exactly obedient. Whether this is not getting separated while finding on the streets, making sure I can always see and hear my companion If he or I are needing to talk on the phone away from the main crowd (such as at church) or just making a quick trip to the bathroom. I need to be constantly aware that we are always keeping the guidelines of obedience to the fullest and not allowing even a small manor of laziness or being unaware of the situation cause us to be disobedient. I know that as I do these last couple things to make sure my companion and I are always obedient in every situation, we will see the blessings and we will continue to strive always to be obedient and not complacent.

I apologize if the emails I send home seem like a soap box or dont really make sense. A lot of times writing home to you all becomes like my journal where there are certain things that I need to hear myself say in order to learn it. And with how much changes over the weeks, if i seem like a different person writing each week, I apologize :) Things here in the zone are going very well. We had a baptism last saturday which was so great! We also are above our needed spot for new investigators in order to accomplish 100 new investigators for the city. This has never been done before and so we are all excited that we will be able to accomplish it for this month. 100 new investigators in 1 month I think is pretty astounding, but it shall be done! :)  I can't imagine how much work there is back home in preparation for the new missions to open up. As in the Doctrine in Covenants "the Lord is hastening His work." We will likely be seeing many new missionaries this next transfer (March 25) that are 18 years old, and many new sister missionaries as well. 

Some excerpts from the journal:


Today... was quite good! we had someone come and talk to us on the street that wanted to know about the church, then when finding in Belmore Park, the same thing happened! Someone came up to me and was wanting to know more about the church. He was a little interrogative, but I think he's truly curious. We set a return appointment and we will see how things go from here. It's really cool to see the blessings like this happen. Then, we had a potential bring several friends to English class and found some more potentials as well. Things are really looking up! :) The night ended well because we had a good Book of Mormon class (every Thursday institute our investigators will come to BOM institute) and the teacher bought pizza for everyone, so that was a nice treat! Now just eating some thai noodles and will be making some calls to try to get some more apts. Hope tomorrow is great as well! Being a missionary is great!

I had some others as well, but I only have 5 minutes so I thought I'd share another cool experience not in the journal yet. Last night we met with Andy. He was a former from about 5 years ago. I really felt the Spirit helping us to teach him what he needed to know. There were several times where he said "wow, that makes so much sense!" Or "okay, that really helps clear up my question." We used a lot of examples and analogies to teach him that just came on the whim. It is remarkable to be able to teach with the Spirit and truly see when He is able to bear witness of the truth. Andy, is a very dynamic and sporadic person. He would cut us off mid sentence and ask questions or get quite loud when asking questions or laughing to where at first it was hard for us to feel that the Spirit was able to teach Him because he was not focusing in order to feel the small promptings, but as we had inspired analogies and stories come to mind that quieted his loud laughter and got him thinking. Then, bearing simple but powerful testimony, we could see him feel the spirit. At the end of our meeting he mentioned how good he had felt and that He would like to meet again eventhough he is extremely busy.

My time is up now, but I want you all to know I love you and am so grateful for all the support you do! Also, I wish Grandma and Grandpa Ray the best as they make this change in their lives regarding how often, and in what manner to serve in the temple. They are both 2 of my biggest role models!! Love you all!

Elder Shafer

So for the pictures.  Last weekend we had to "flee babylon" for mardi gras. We went out to a place that had heaps of trees and these nicely tamed parrots which were so used to missionaries feeding them over the years, they will eat right from your hand haha! It was so cool to wake up and get ready and just see lots of parrots, Cockatoos, Kookaburras and other birds flying around and singing. I didn't try feeding these bread from my mouth though, those beaks are sharp!! :) 

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